Ohio Republican Gov. Mike DeWine vetoed legislation that prohibits ‘gender-affirming treatments’ in children and bans biological men from women’s sports.

“DeWine’s veto makes him one of only two Republican governors to veto a restriction on gender-affirming care,” NBC News reports.

The other GOP governor to veto such legislation was former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson in 2021.

DeWine is one of three Republican governors, alongside Utah Gov. Spencer Cox and Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb, to veto a trans athlete bill.

In a Friday press conference, DeWine said it was a “gut-wrenching” decision to allow the mutilation of children and it “should not be made by the government, should not be made by the state of Ohio.”


According to the Associated Press, GOP legislators hold enough seats to override DeWine’s veto.

However, it’s unclear when they would do so.

AP reports:

In a news conference Friday, DeWine said he had listened to people on both sides of the legislation who “truly believe their position best protects children.”

He found that the bill would affect a small number of Ohio children, “but for those children who face gender dysphoria and for their families, the consequences of this bill could not be more profound.”

“Ultimately, I believe this is about protecting human life,” he said, announcing his decision to veto the legislation.

“Now, while there are rare times in the law in other circumstances where the state overrules the medical decisions made by the parents, I can think of no examples where this is done where it is not only against the decision of the parent, but also against the medical judgement of the treating physician and against the judgement of the treating team of medical experts,” he said. “Therefore, I cannot sign this bill as it currently written.”

Republican State Rep. Gary Click, the bill’s primary sponsor, previously said that minors are “incapable of providing the informed consent necessary to make those very risky and life-changing decisions.”

From NBC News:

More than 290 people signed up to speak at an opposition hearing for the bill earlier this month, including a number of physicians, according to WCMH-TV.

One of them, Dr. Christopher Bolling, a retired pediatrician who spoke on behalf of the Ohio Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, told NBC News that the bill targets a very small number of adolescents. Bolling practiced for more than three decades and saw thousands of families before retiring last year. Of those, he said he only worked with 20-30 who had persistent gender dysphoria. He referred most of them to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, where he said they reported having positive experiences.

Proponents of restrictions on transition care for minors have cited European countries restricting access to such care. However, Bolling noted that none of those countries have banned it, rather, they are questioning it, which he said all doctors do with all types of care. He said there might be disagreement among doctors regarding how to best treat trans minors, but that disagreement isn’t unique to gender-affirming care.

“You get two pediatricians in a room, we can probably talk about the treatment of an ear infection for four hours, and differences of opinions on how to do it,” he said. “There are going to be differences of opinions on how to do any complicated care and this is complicated care. Having legislators come in to say, ‘This is settled and this needs to be treated this way,’ at this point, is ridiculous. They do it under the guise of saying, ‘Well, we just want to take time and find out if it’s really safe.’ Well, if you’re banning it, you’re never going to figure out if it’s safe either.”

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